tv [untitled] February 9, 2011 9:00pm-9:30pm PST
announcer: big dreams and goodrades aren't enough to get into college. there are actual steps you need to take. finding someone who can help is the first and most important. for the next steps, go to knowhow2go.org. proclaimed may as asian american pacific heritage month in a ceremony. many communicate organizations host events and programs to celebrate and educate. the theme of this year's celebration is celebrate heritage, celebrate unity. immigrants arrived during the gold rush of 1949. we will highlight events in san francisco history that galvanized and united the asian
pacific community. the fight for bilingual nejz the schools. the student strikes the workshop system and one unforgettable struggle that captured the attention of the nation the fight against e visions at the international hotel. >> it was horrifying experience where it was bloody and violent. >> [inaudible] on kaerny street a 10 block community where many filipinos lived. in the 1910th and the 20's and 30's. there were night clubs and restaurants and small businesses. it was a lot of the [inaudible] many of them who came in the earlier time they called it home. at the time and the international hotel struggle
happened, it was right on kerny and jackson. that was the last building, the last block of manila town that was standing. san francisco at the time was going through a period you know, where there was redevelopment they were expanding to the western edition. they were tearing down a lot of communities. at the same time it was a time when a lot of asian americans were becoming more aware of our heritage and the conditions of our communities. and that basically created, sort of a, sort of a back drop for the hotel struggle. >> the struggle began in 1968 and the first eviction notices were given to the elderly residents the international hotel was spiritualy healthy and a hub for filipino culture and community. the hotel sat on valuable downtown property the last
remaining rock of san francisco's manila town. >> the owners wanted to tear the building down they wanted something for commercial like a parking lot. in 72 the building was put on the market and purchased in 1973. the new owner was a foreign investor with no ties to the local community. >> the only way we could stop eviction was building our base of support in the community outside of the community, we really needed the conductions with the unions and the churches, neighborhoods. we knew that having that strong base was our best offense against any future threats. the >> the tenants looked for help in the courts. their appeals helped delay evictions for 3 years until april 6 when ira brown rule indeed favor of the owners.
they were going to be evicted. >> you have to understand that at that the time there was a mass movement that was building during those years after april 1976. many people came were in support of the tenants. there was one demonstration ittit happened in front of the hotel it was significant because it showed how much people were opposed to this eviction. the clash with the community support and the property developers finally came on august foushth of 1977. >> 3,000 people in front as a human barricade. there were several hundred police and sheriffs who seized the building up on the roof and through the front the human barricade into going inside the
building. real tragedy. people were tossed on the street. you know, and i mean it was very degrading and humiliating for them to put out with all their belongings inside and again, there was looting, you know, you know, ransacking of their property and money. it was just really a sad time. >> it was really traumatic experience for me, personnelly. i never thought it would resort to going that far. i mean, you never know what an eviction is until you live through it. i will never foreget the faces or forget those who suffered through it. they were my friends a lot were my teachers. and women who were my closest friendses. the elderly residents they could find hathey could find and a lot uponed to remain in china town or manila town.
the housing was really very dangerous for many of them because it wasn't home. wasn't like their family or friends protecting them. i think for a lot of them died of a broken heart. if you look at the hotel it was not just a housing struggle it was a fight to open up other things bike a book store and a workshop. the asian american art form. at the same time this was not something that pertained to san francisco it spread. it became a symbol for asian americans all over the country. it was on television with the whole country to see much the struggle to save the hotel was over. both sides continued to maneuver trying to win the real victory hawould have on 848 kerny the impact lasted for 15 years. >> our mission was to get the
building up. the e vision was 77 the building went down in 79. after 79 it was a hole in the ground. all the years when it was a hole in the ground nobody knew it was a manila town. this is the manila town district. this is the first community was here in san francisco. >> our whole goals was farming in the manila town center through the heritage foundation was to make sure we passed that legacy on the story would be told again and again. to other younger ones so they would look upon this international hotel as a symbol of heroic struggles like you would a folk tale. we are hosting stan ordand ucla. in that sense it's a real institution for people to learn
and pride about the fact that this is really our history. this is our history as asian americans we came together and fought for this. >> you can learn more about the fight by visiting the manila town heritage foundation on kerny street or manilatown. org. >> what happened at the international hotel in the years leading up to 77 might that have been possible without the student activists who rallied around the elderly residents these organizers were the result of the third world student strike is that occurred in california in the late 60's. the strike at san francisco state college was the largest and longest of the actions. and gave birth to a generation who would unite and serve their communities. in the late 1960's san francisco
state college students unified to question the meaning of their education. their actions would have a dramatic impact on american colleges and universities. the third world strunt strike lasted 5 months from 68-69 it temporarily shut down the campus and is now the largest college in ethnic studies in the nation. >> san francisco state college drew students from across california in particular from the ethnic groups within san francisco. many students were the first in their families to attend college. >> we have a laundry on polk street my father got called all kinds of ethnic slurs because we would lose somebody's sock i blamed it on ourselves and our
family and being born chinese. when i got to state i was quite ripe to hear an alternative story. >> as young people left their ethnic neighborhoods they entered a new community. an academic environment that because of world issues and current affairs. college students were galvanized by the vietnam war and inspired by the black power movement. in the daily nies people were agitated and there were a growing number of people who had the obviously political feelings. i understand it had a lot to do with civil rights and the pressure for equality and demands for social justice. i had not found a group of people they could talk to about political issues in global terms, yes. in national terms, yes not in ethnic specific terms.
how does this affect filipino americas. >> they were organizing around california. in san francisco the third world liberation front was formed to challenge education. the front was spearhead by the black student union who lead a coalition of hispanic and native american and others they had 15 demands intending to change the focus and the power structure of san francisco state. these 15 demands had 3 themes. the right of third world students to an education. the formation of a school of ethnic studies. and the hiring of third world faculty. school administration gave little response. history professor john martinez and george mirror were
disciplined the school student actions were disrupted this had an increased police presence on campus. inspired by malcomx's philosophy, by any means necessary they made the decision to strike on november 6. 1968. hundreds of students disrupted classes and marched to the office. by november eighth class attendance dropped by 50 percent. students had police violence and arrested. many leaders within the third world liberation front were arrested and jailed cut off from actions on campus. the pressure was affecting the administration. college president robert smith resignd and replaced by english professor. he was more visible in his opposition for the strike famous at a campus rally and promoting
police presence much he declared an early december holiday believing a longer recess would weaken the strike. >> what actually happened was i was witness to this was we did more planning. and did more organizing. and as a result of that what we got back we had different ways to approach these issues. i remember hearing a rumor that the chancellor of the state college system and the board of trustees and the legislator had agreed that they were going to shut the campus down. the fear that the campus could be closed hurt everybody whether or not you were for or against the strike. upon students and it made people take the issue of resolving this matter very seriously. >> a select committee was a pounted to meet with third war liberation front leaders.
they worked to negotiate a resolution during the spring semester of 69. on march 14th they reached a tentative agreement. the president never signed the document. the resolution included avd mission slots for underrepresented students. rehiring of faculty members and most importantly the establishment of a college ever ethnic studies. unity. across ethnic, racial and economic lines resulted in a generation of asian americans who are conscious of their individual and collective histories and are more engage indeed their communities. the need for ethnic study classes remains as imperative as it was in 1968. some of the protests have returned to san francisco state university. now, they work as the administration. >> you would think that with
all this trying to wash away race and make us come as one american so we can be patriotic as we should, right, that people wouldn't want to be in these classes. that's not the case. i realized why. most of them are still asking the question, how do i fit in this american context? >> as graduates of the first ethnic study classes returned to work in their community they found cultural training lacking in public schools. immigrant students arriving from the immigration act of 65 were asked to a simulate and learn in renglish only classrooms. educators and lawyers and activists wanted to ensure that
these students would be taught to value their cultural heritage and their primary languages. the legal struggle for bilingual education began in san francisco's china koun and cull monate in the u.s. supreme court in 74. >> if you look at the history of bilingual education or education to serve the english learning in general, i think that you know we cannot talk about that without mentioning the law case of 74. lau versus nicoles. >> they fell that they need, you know, for the group of youngsters who come to the country with limited english and they were not getting the full benefit the educationals and are not being taught the language that they understand. >> there are 3 goals in
bilingual education programs to improve efficiency. to continue teaching core curriculum in student's primary languages and to maintain student's cultural identity. >> i think that the key question is that for student who coming from a foreign country with a low level of english proefficiency, how are you going to help these kids be able to take the challenge and being successful in the school? and just take an example, a student coming from china and who may be at a high school level and then he is got his education, you know, experience from china only in chinese. and now he's in this new country and he has to challenge the high school school curriculum all in english. and it's a huge challenge there. >> because of the immigration
act of 1965 san francisco schools had a sharp increase in the number of immigration student in thes late 60's. these students struggled in an english only environment feeling alienal alienat alienated. teacherers were ill-equipped to teach the classes and were frustrated. they heard the complaints of parents and teachers. the san francisco school district add administrators realized students were not learning properly they felt they did not have adequate resources nor the responsibility to teach the students english. in 1970, there was a class action lawsuit against the school administration. lau, a first grader at jean parker elementary in china town was the first named plaintiff.
board of education president peter nicoles was named as defendant. after repeated apeels lau versus nicoles was heard at the u.s. supreme court on december 10, 73. the court ruled in favor of the students stating there it is no equality of treatment merely by providing the same facilities. students who don't understand english are foreclosed from meaningful education. the chinese affirmative actions and teachers teachers were trained in bilingual education and programs were developed in schools across san francisco. in the 30 years since the lau decision bilingual programs continue to be controversial. many who of educators believe
students will function better in mainstream classrooms. at times bilingual education has been attacked by people who are making a biased point in immigration policy. >> in 1988 another turn in the legislation and the preposition 227 passing in california, which only to really redefine the program requirements for english learners. in that preposition and the only want to use enlish as the only medium for instruction for the immigrant students. and san francisco regardless of the preposition 227 and still be able until now to offer bilingual education because our district is choose to exercise our right in under the federal law of the la uconn cent decree.
that's why we are able to provide the bilingual programs in the district. >> today the ssufg has 15,000 students who speak one of 72 languaging other than english. the district offers heavy 2 way emersion programs in cantonese, spanish, mandarin and korean. now we have language enrichment programs. the ap i education coalition still stresses the need for language access for more waves of immigrants such as southeast asians and pacific islanders. >> it takes 7 years for a student to build the english proefficiency. we don't want student's education disrupted. so educational system is our
core and responsibility to make sure that that bilingual needs are being met so the educational process is not interrupted. the lau decision impacted schools across the country. for more than 1800 chinese-american children considered in 1973. the decision has also know cited in many language access cases including voter information and ballot information. thanks to those who pursued the la ukase in the 77's students can be multili multilingual. individual bilingualeducation. org. kerny street workshops began as a community teaching space
inside the international hotel. after the evictions they relocated but kept their name and community spirit. during the 80's and 90's ksw curated the american jazz festiv festiv festival. it's gallery feature artists and host of the annual ground breaking festival. they remain within the community. kerny street is still home with people can express what it means to be asian american. >> we are celebrating or 35th anniversary. in august we were founded in 1972. there are 3 founders. there was not a lot of original art work coming out of china town they wanted to provide
incentives for development and create expressions they opened in in the international hotel in manila town and the first the programming was a lot of workshop and silk screening and sewing, music and visual arts and different kinds of performance. in the 70's ksw was involved in the actions going to the actions and when they were being evicted from the hotel they were protesting and it was that kind of action. it's evolved a lot from that from the 70's but there's all the artists we worked with all have a very specific political viewpoint. i think that -- a space for artists to express those views creatively and invite community dialogue. >> in 91 mark ezu launched the
asian american jazz festival, ksw sponsored the event. >> the asian american jazz festival continued ksw's mission poets found their voices. ksw recognized a new generation of asian americans. the next initiative was laurened in 1998 to promote emerging artists under 35. that year they took a chance to see if san francisco was ready for a new asian american art's festival. >> hundreds of people came more than expected. there was a community need for the space for emerging artists and audiences to see it.
one of the good thing about ksw because we work with emerging artists a lot of people don't think of themselves as artists until they become involved with ksw. whether it's a reading at a workshop or if they are in the festival for emerging artists. a lot of people say they never started thinking of themselves as an artist until they perform indeed that festival. the feedback i get when i talk to people is that they have a unique sense of home when they come here and also of feeling they are part of a very rare community that's strong and giving and rich. not everybody will have material that's about asian americans. not everybody will have work where you look at it and say that's an identity piece exploring their family and history. what we are trying to do is create a space for asian
american artists and community members to come together and think about what it means to be asian american and how there is not a strict definition of that but it's changing and expanding and also relevant it's relevant to all of national issues. and human issues personal issues. >> these conversations are taking place at a unique time in kerny street's history. original ksw measures are interacting be artists. ksw's community acrosses in generatio generations. >> it's great to see the things asian american artists are doing now different from what we were doing we were doing murals and different art. others come in and they this is
not asian american i don't understand what i'm looking at there is a range of people's reactions it's a different space, it's a lot of different artists and there are new generations involved. i hope they will be radically different in 20 years. ksw's mission and to promote art. it's difficult to quantify but i think that it definitely connects people and we place an emphasis on building the community and connecting with organizations through the program. i guess it's successful in that sense. i know people feel at home here. >> to learn more visit kernystreet. org. >> in each of these stores we witnessed